'Mighty Mouse' Replaces Pickett Against Torres at UFC 130
British bantamweight Brad Pickett has suffered an injury and has been forced to withdraw from his UFC 130 bout with Miguel Torres. Stepping in to face the former WEC champion in Pickett's stead will be Demetrious Johnson, the promotion announced Wednesday evening.
"The fastest man in the division has answered the call, and Demetrious Johnson will move into Pickett’s spot to face the former divisional kingpin," said UFC president Dana White. "Both men have verbally agreed to the fight."
Ben Henderson Isn't Afraid of Canadians, Wants Rematch With Anthony Pettis
Former WEC Lightweight Champion Ben Henderson could be forgiven if he was bitter about his last fight: a tight decision loss to Anthony Pettis that will forever be remembered more for "The Kick" than any of the action leading up to it.
But the 27-year-old isn't looking back and is ready to travel to hostile territory when he faces Canadian Mark Bocek to open the PPV portion of UFC 129 in Toronto, Canada. He isn't concerned in the least with the task of battling Bocek in front of a raucous pro-Canadian crowd of 55,000.
Cartwheeling Bellator Champ Zach Makovsky says bring on Joe Warren
With three-straight outdoor fights to his Bellator Fighting Championships record, Bellator bantamweight champ Zach Makovsky (13-2 MMA, 5-0 BFC) is no stranger to fighting under the sun.
That said, even "Fun Size" admits the glaring afternoon heat of Yuma, Ariz., had him a bit worried a this past week's Bellator 41 event.
"When I went out to the cage earlier in the day, it was really hot," Makovsky recently told MMAjunkie.com Radio (www.mmajunkie.com/radio). "If I sat in one place on the canvas, my feet were kind of burning. I was a little nervous, but the temperature went down by the time the fight started, and it was really enjoyable."
Mark Pavelich Attacks Referee Pay, 'Big' John McCarthy Responds
The always outspoken MFC promoter Mark Pavelich made a minor splash with his most recent newsletter. In it he claimed that certain referees have become "celebrity referees" who charge upwards of $10,000 to work an event. From the newsletter:
It’s outrageous and absolutely inappropriate. These certain referees are charging anywhere from $5,000 to $10,000 just to show up, bark out a catchphrase, and supervise a fight. But these fees aren’t being paid by any commission. They are paid by a show owner or promoter. And quite frankly it’s sad that some promoters feel obliged to pay them and put them front and center on a poster.
Why would they do that? Honestly, for most of them, it’s because they don’t have any talent pool to draw from so the biggest ovation of the night for anybody in the ring is for the referee. That’s a terrible statement for the sport of mixed martial arts. You don’t have much of a show if you’re paying your referee five times what you’re paying the two guys in the main event.
And how can you not call into question the ethics of these referees. Would you not expect their loyalties to be torn when some promoter is willing to pay them 10K, and that same referee is then calling the action when the promoter’s top fighters are in action.
It’s time for the commissions governing MMA to put a pay structure in place for all referees. They would be paid according to their experience, the level of competition they have overseen, and even feedback from notable fighters and insiders. There are a number of very good referees out there, including those that have worked recent MFC events. But even they shouldn’t be allowed to just toss out a price tag, or have a commission toss out one for them. There should be a pay scale in place – here’s what you get paid (plus reasonable expenses) … take it or leave it.
Bellator 44: Lyman Good vs Dan Hornbuckle booked for welterweight tournament qualifier on May 14
CHICAGO, Ill. (April 18, 2011) - Bellator Fighting Championships continues to add to its already stacked Atlantic City fight card, this time adding a Season 5 welterweight tournament qualifier fight between former Bellator Welterweight World Champion Lyman "Cyborg" Good and Season 2 tournament finalist Dan "The Handler" Hornbuckle.
Headlining the May 14th show will be a non-title Super Fight featuring reigning Bellator World Middleweight Champion and former Judo Olympian Hector Lombard against dangerous Hawaiian UFC veteran Falaniko Vitale. And, rounding out the nights stacked card is a Lightweight Tournament Championship fight between Brazilian Knockout artist Patricky Pitbull and undefeated NCAA Champion Mike Chandler.
"Good vs. Hornbuckle is a fight a lot of MMA fans, myself included, have wanted to see for quite some time," said Bellator Chairman and CEO Bjorn Rebney. "These two guys have Bellator in their blood, and on May 14th one will move into our next Tournament and one will go home. This promises to be a great fight on May 14th at Caesars."
Dan Severn challenges Royce Gracie to retirement match in Brazil
Since the hint of a UFC Event in Brazil hit the Online Rumor Mill, Dan Severn has been passionate about his intentions to take part in this event as being his finale match to his fans and the MMA Community.
Dan has said on numerous occasions that if he had the opportunity to have such a match in Brazil, he would want it to be with Royce Gracie.
Rashad Evans Responds to Jon Jones on Twitter
No.1 contender Rashad Evans responds to UFC Light-Heavyweight champ and former training partner Jon Jones claims of constantly getting the better of Rashad in training at Greg Jackson's MMA. Jones told ESPN.com that he had several times to finish Evans during pratice but never did out of respect. Rashad Evan tweets:
Kimbo Slice's Manager, Entourage Accused of Using Underage Girl in Adult Film
May 8th will mark a full calendar year since Kimbo Slice participated in a mixed martial arts bout, and we haven't heard much from the South Beach street fighter in the interim. Prior to lacing up the four ounce gloves, Slice worked as a chauffeur and bodyguard for the Miami-based porn-company Reality Kings, who he maintained as an entourage during his legitimate fight career.
Despite the porn industry's reputation as a bastion of upstanding ethics and general goodery, Slice's adopted family, including his manager, appears to be in hot water. The Miami New Times blog reports:
?The hardcore porn starring Bieyanka Moore-- who was actually a 15-year-old runaway, according to a lawsuit filed by her mother-- was distributed by RK Netmedia, owner of RealityKings.com. But according to the mother's attorney, Mark A. Glassman, it was produced by LLL Advertising, Inc., the company owned by "Icey" Mike Imber-- manager to MMA fighter Kimbo Slice.
FBI seizes top online poker sites, including traditional MMA mega-sponsors
Apparently, sometimes you can stop the Internet – at least briefly, anyway.
Online poker sites PokerStars.com, FullTiltPoker.com and AbsolutePoker.com were today seized by the Federal Bureau of Investigation, and the owners of the sites have been charged with accusations of fraud and illegal gambling.
The shutdown could have a substantial impact in the world of mixed martial arts as the online poker industry features several companies that have traditionally invested heavily in the sponsorship of entire promotions, as well as individual fighters.
UFC Light Heavyweight Champion Jon Jones Saves The Day… Again
Jon “Bones” Jones may soon need to change his nickname to Superman or Batman.
The current UFC light heavyweight champion has somehow gotten into the hero business over the last couple of months, and business is good.
Jones hit the spotlight on the same day he fought Maurcio “Shogun” Rua for the UFC light heavyweight title when he subdued a thief after he broke into someone’s car and stole their belongings.
Jones, along with his coaches Mike Winkeljohn and Greg Jackson, stopped the thief and held him there until police could arrive to make the official arrest.
Jones’ heroics don’t always involve stopping thieves.
While on a business trip to Florida this week, Jones observed a young woman along with her child involved in a somewhat loud conversation over a cell phone while he was checking into his hotel.
According to sources, Jones overheard the young woman crying because she had apparently flown to Florida to be with her boyfriend, and after an argument ensued, he left her and her child to fend for themselves with no place to stay and an airline ticket for a flight that didn’t depart for two days...
Rashad Evans Decides Against Training at One Specific Gym for Jon Jones Fight
Instead of joining a new camp, Rashad Evans has decided to train in several different locations in preparation for his light heavyweight title fight against Jon Jones.
Glenn Robinson, Evans manager at Authentic Sports Management, confirmed with MMA Fighting on Wednesday that "Suga" is "not going to train at one specific place" for the Jones fight.
"(Evans) is going to do a private training camp headed by Coach (Mike) Van Arsdale," Robinson said.
Robinson added that Evans' camp will officially kick off in "a couple of weeks," while the light heavyweight showdown between the former training partners is still scheduled to take place in late September or early October.
Strikeforce move to the bigs includes bush-league writter ban
The enduring image from Saturday night's Strikeforce event was not of Nick Diaz or Gilbert Melendez rocking the house in San Diego with the stuff of a champion, or even of a bloodied, battered yet rejuvenated Keith Jardine. Even more memorable -- and surreal -- was the sight of UFC president Dana White sitting cageside in a Strikeforce T-shirt. This was the second-fiddle mixed martial arts promotion's first major event since being purchased by the top-dog UFC's parent company. And the historic evening made clear that it's now a whole new ballgame for the organization White not long ago was referring to as "Strikefarce."
LESNAR: "I want to be a farmer."
Mike Straka: "Mick Foley became a very succesful author. The Rock became a very sucessful actor. John Cena is also doing acting as well ... What do you see as your future?"
Brock Lesnar: "I'm planning my retirement every day. My heart and soul is on the farm. I've got two young boys and a young daughter and a beautiful wife at home that I just love to be around. I just want to raise my kids and be Joe Farmer Jones."
Cyborg Santos and Tarec Saffiedine slated to fight, possibly at July Strikeforce
A welterweight matchup pitting Evangelista "Cyborg" Santos (18-14 MMA, 1-2 SF) against Tarec Saffiedine (10-3 MMA, 2-1 SF) has been targeted by Strikeforce officials.
A late-July event planned by the California-based promotion is likely to host the matchup, sources close to the event today told MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com).
However, official confirmation has yet to arrive. Verbal agreements are currently in place for the fight, though.
Jay Hieron defends victory over Brent Weedman in Bellator tourney semifinals
You might have noticed a visible sigh from Jay Hieron (21-4 MMA, 2-0 BFC) when he was announced the winner in a fight with Brent Weedman (18-6-1 MMA, 4-1 BFC) this past Saturday at Bellator 40.
Some might say that sigh was an acknowledgment that he'd just dodged a bullet.
But that's not the case, Hieron on Monday told MMAjunkie.com Radio (www.mmajunkie.com/radio). It was a sigh of happy exhaustion.
Nick "The Goat" Thompson Announces Retirement on The Underground
Long time UGer Nick Thompson has had over 50 fights, in the UFC, Strikeforce, Sengoku, MFC, Elite XC, Bodog, Bellator, and most recently in Japan's World Victory Road. He is the former Bodog Fight Welterweight Champion, and holds wins over Eddie Alvarez, Paul Daley, and Josh Neer, among many others.
Thompson was named after an unfortunate animal breed, the “fainting goat” after displaying the habit of getting knocked out almost on command during his early days in the gym. He shed half of his moniker when he showed a growing propensity to maintain consciousness. While fans may raise their eyebrows at his resulting nickname, he's the Goat today because he personifyied the Japan proverb, "fall down seven times, get up eight:"
Cole Konrad to Face Paul Buentello at Bellator 42
Bellator heavyweight champion Cole Konrad has been booked to face UFC and Strikeforce veteran Paul Buentello in a non-title superfight scheduled for Bellator 42 on April 23 in Concho, Okla.
Konrad, who made his MMA debut in 2010 and finished the year with a perfect record of 7-0, ran through Rogent Lloret, Damian Grabowski and Neil Grove during last season's Bellator tournament to win the heavyweight belt. At 27 years of age, Konrad is remains a prospect in MMA off his accomplishments as a two-time NCAA wrestling champion with the University of Minnesota.